Saturday, October 11, 2014

The Windshield Incident Pt. 4 Sneak Peek

One of my favorite elements of The Windshield Incident has been Grant's everyman-ness. He doesn't automatically get jokes, or pick up on body language, or figure out the motivations of others. He's not terribly introspective or intelligent, as opposed to characters like Tucker Jones (who spends most of his day inside his own head) or even Aaron of Watching Him Back. My challenge for this latest installment was to let Grant grow up a little without losing the basic elements of who he is: friendly yet socially awkward, a long-term planner, easily caught off guard, and the type of guy to blend into the background.

Sarah and I were at a coffee shop in Springfield when I saw him. “Oh my god,” I said before I could stop myself.

Sarah turned to follow my line of sight. “What? What?”

Clearing my head with a shake, I tried to shrug it off. “No, I’m just surprised. The junkyard dog of my high school is in line.”

She laughed, showing off her pretty white teeth. “Which one is he?”


His hair was shorter now, more clean cut, but he had the kind of scruff that was either a bitch to maintain or he literally hadn’t shaved in two days. A pair of aviator sunglasses hung from the neck of his shirt, pulling it down just enough to show a smattering of fur on his chest. The leather jacket wasn’t the exact one he had worn in high school, but it probably smelled the same.

“The big guy with the Tigers shirt,” Sarah suggested. I glanced at the linebacker-gone-to-seed type she indicated.

“Nope. Don’t think bully, think anathema.”

She nodded her head at the front of the line. “Ordering now, neck tattoos, looks like he'd surprise you with a golden shower.”

That earned a chuckle. “Okay, the kind of anathema who still gets laid a whole, whole lot. Like an unreal amount. Boatloads.”

“Oh! Then him.” Sarah subtly pointed to Ryder Vance.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Very First Part of the Short Story Currently Known as Prom Night

It has been over a decade since I spent any time around high school girls, so I have no idea if this is an accurate representation of how they think or act. Whatever.

“Oh my god, seriously?” Kenzie squeals, piercing the refectory buzz. When you attend a fancy schmancy private school, you don’t call it a cafeteria. Flipping her smooth brown hair over her shoulder Kenzie leans in close. “He asked you?”

I give her a look. “Please. You know it doesn’t mean anything. We’re practically siblings.”

“But it’s senior effing prom,” she counters emphatically. “Josh could go with anyone, and he picked you.”

I know there’s more coming, but so is Josh and the rest of the upper echelon. “Shut up,” I say as a preventative measure.

“His childhood friend.” She clasps her hands over her heart.

“Shut up.”

“The love that has been right beside him all along.”

“Shut.” I kick at Kenzie under the table. “Up.”

“Hi!” she says brightly as Josh reaches our table.

Friday, October 3, 2014


The first story I started in this universe currently holds the title of "Prom Night," which is about a girl who tries to help her neighbor come out of the closet. The small city, private school setting provided the teacher for "Shouldn't." A tertiary character mentioned in "Prom Night" became one of the main characters in a short extra called "Olive Juice." Then I thought, Wouldn't it be nice to tell the story from the other guy's perspective? So "Shouldn't" is getting a sequel called, "Wouldn't" (I'm very creative) and "Olive Juice" has a prequel from Declan's point of view. Here's the part where the action kicks off.

We both realize what he just did at the same time. I think I frown, I don't know, but Will's eyes get huge. I never realized how black his eyes were until his face turned into a cartoon. Just two black circles on his face surrounded by shaggy black hair. It would have been funny at any other time. He looked like he was about to apologize, and then he ran, literally ran, to his car. He almost backed into our mailbox, he was in such a hurry to leave.